Hot Soft Pretzels

1 packet active dry yeast

3 teaspoons dark brown sugar

1 1/2 cup warm water (105 - 110 degrees f.)

1 tablespoon salt

4 cups all-purpose flour

cornmeal and extra flour for dusting -- worksurface coarse kosher salt

In a large bowl combine yeast, 1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar, and water and let stand 5 minutes until foamy and bubbly. Add remaining sugar and salt and stir well. Add the flour, 1 cup at a time, mixing by hand until well incorporated. Knead dough until smooth about 7 minutes and has a sheen. Transfer to a bowl and let stand, covered, for 40 minutes in a warm place.

Dust your work surface with flour and cornmeal. Divide dough into approximately 12 pieces and roll out to desired length and thickness. (Note: thinner,crispier). Form dough into pretzel-shapes and transfer to a baking sheet that has been lightly dusted with cornmeal. Allow pretzels to rise for 30 minutes, uncovered.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Carefully transfer risen pretzels to boiling water with a spatula and boil on one side for 2 minutes, flip and boil other side for 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer boiled pretzels to a rack to drain for 1 minute. Arrange pretzels on a baking sheet, lightly dusted with cornmeal, and sprinkle with kosher salt. Bake for 20 minutes until golden brown.

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